Canada’s hotel industry, which currently employs over 290,000 people, is facing a nation-wide labour shortage crisis. The program is an important one for the industry as it tries to fill labour market needs. The Canadian lodging industry is experiencing a structural labour gap. The gap can only be closed by more people willing and able to work from Canada and abroad in its properties.
“The Temporary Foreign Worker Program is important to the hotel industry and has been used successfully at a number of properties across Canada to meet labour challenges.” said Tony Pollard, President of the Hotel Association of Canada. “It is important to note that the industry uses the program accord ing to legislated requirements and that any deviation should receive full force of sanctions. The HAC welcomes and encourages government intervention with the objective of ensuring vacant jobs are filled. ”
According to the Alberta Hotel and Lodging Association’s 2013 Labour Market Survey conducted by Price Waterhouse Coopers, the lodging industry continues to rely on foreign workers in front line occupations including Front Desk Agents, Housekeepers, Food and Beverage Servers and Kitchen Helpers. Foreign workers are an important source of labour to the industry. The results of the survey dispel two common myths, namely that minimum wage jobs are the norm in the hospitality industry and secondly that foreign workers are consistently paid less than their Canadian equivalents. Furthermore these wages, which are above minimum wage, do not include gratuities, benefits or bonuses.
In addition to recognizing that the crisis exists, the HAC is asking the Government of Canada to take immediate action to improve the system.
About the Hotel Association of Canada
The Hotel Association of Canada is the effective voice of the Canadian Hotel & Lodging industry. For over 100 years, it has worked to enhance the prosperity of the Canadian Hotel and Lodging Industry through strong
member engagement, effective advocacy, and the provision of value added programs and services. The Hotel Association represents more than 8,500 hotels, motels and resorts that encompass the $17.6 billion Canadian hotel industry which employs 290,000 people across Canada. www.hotelassociation.ca.
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